My Favorite Thing: Aaron's Senegalese Statue

By Jordan Kushins / Published by Dwell
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In this installment of My Favorite Thing, editor Aaron Britt shares a gift given to him by some students, and contemplates its power to influence his future.

Aaron: This three inch statue was given to me by a pair of Senegalese kids, Yamar and his sister Fatou, whom I taught for the summer of 2004 while living in Washington DC. Though it's just a token from their home country, one which they pined for with particular vigor during my lessons, I've always cherished it as a memory of them and as a kind of spur, encouraging me to get to West Africa.

I've had a yen to visit there for many years, and after spending time with Yamar, Fatou, their aunt Rose who was also a teacher at the Rock Creek International School, and their mother who came for a visit, my resolve solidified. I keep the statue on my desk at home, or in the windowsill, but always out, his little hand raised, his tassel-less fez standing erect, and speculate about what sort of person he's meant to represent.  A scholar, a cleric, a storyteller, a merchant? He appears to be in the midst of saying something, but what, I can't divine. Perhaps only a trip to Senegal will tell.

Don't forget! We want to hear your stories about favorite furniture or objects in your house. Send photos and a brief description of what it is and why you love it to giveaway[at]dwell[dot]com. We'll enter your name in a drawing to win a free set of plates designed by Jessica Rust. We're waiting to hear from you! 

Jordan Kushins


Jordan Kushins is happiest when crafting but also enjoys drinking tea, swimming in outdoor pools, and Singin' in the Rain, and once baked a very large cake that was shaped like a hamburger.

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